GOP lawmaker seeks to bring back state firearm background checks

By Tom Lehman 3:49pm, March 7, 2013
Gerald Hocker
A Republican state lawmaker wants to bring back state background checks for those buying guns.

State Sen. Gerald Hocker (R-Ocean View) who also is a gun dealer, plans to introduce legislation that would require the State Bureau of Identification to perform background checks.

"I'm not asking to do anything that we at one time didn't do, and I would rather be safe than sorry and why not have a double check?" Hocker says.

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The state level background checks were discontinued in 2011 by a law signed by Gov. Markell, who said they only duplicated the effort of the Federal background check. The law mandated that the State Bureau of Indentification begin sending its information to the National Instant Criminal Background Check database.

However, Hocker disagrees with the assessment that state background checks would be duplicative in the gun-buying process.

"It's not a duplication if they're picking up things quicker than the federal government and getting back to you when the federal government a lot of times didn't get back to us in the three working days," Hocker says.

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